The final blow was struck: Russian A-50s were ground down

Ukrainians hit Russian A-50 planes, each of which is worth 300 million dollars. They struck the last blow when they targeted the repair center.


First, a Ukrainian drone damaged an A-50 on the ground in Belarus last year. Subsequently, on January 14, a Ukrainian long-range missile shot down an A-50 over the Sea of Azov in southern Ukraine. Six weeks later, on February 23, in the same area, another Ukrainian missile destroyed the third A-50, writes Forbes.

The Russian Air Force soon after grounded all "surviving" A-50s and attempted to replace the two or three lost aircraft. This means that at least one older and possibly faulty A-50, out of several dozen such aircraft built in the 1980s, has passed through an aviation repair facility in the Russian city of Taganrog, on the coast of the Sea of Azov, just 130 kilometers from the front.

The Ukrainians immediately attacked the factories in Taganrog with drones in order to make it impossible to repair or rebuild these planes. The existing A-50 aircraft was supposed to be succeeded by the newer generation A-100, but tests have been going on for years and it is possible that this model will never enter operational use.

It is not entirely clear what exactly happened in Taganrog and what the consequences are. It is known that late on Friday night or early Saturday morning, the Ukrainians targeted the facilities of the aviation repair institute. It can be assumed, according to Russian reports, that it was a drone attack.

The Ukrainian analytical group "Frontelligence Insight" studied satellite images to try to find out what actually happened in Taganrog. They focused on the building of the Beriev complex, which they assume is where A-50 aircraft and other large aircraft are serviced.

In late February, an A-50 was parked near the hangar. It may be the same plane, freshly painted, that the Russian media recently presented as proof that the Russian Air Force, despite its losses, still has enough of these radar planes. But that same plane is not visible in the footage after the Ukrainian attack, which could mean that at the time it was inside the hangar, which has visible damage to the roof.

"If the drones managed to penetrate through the roof, the cargo in the drones would be enough to cause damage to the equipment and aircraft inside the hangar," writes "Frontelligence", as quoted by

"However, there are no indications of a significant fire inside the hangar," the report added. In short, it can be assumed that the Ukrainians were very close to destroying the fourth A-50 in two years and the third in less than two months. Even if the drones missed, they sent a message to the Russian Air Force: "You can put all the old A-50s back into service. We'll hunt them down one by one."

By the way, it is said that Russian forces predicted a Ukrainian attack on this repair facility, and in order to protect it, they installed a long-range anti-aircraft system in the vicinity. But they failed to prevent the drone attack at night.


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